In spite of Monday’s post I’m still ambivalent about social media and I’m not just thinking about Facebook, Twitter and their ilk, but also blogs and other commentary.
Part of my ambivalence is from the anonymity available. Mark Suster defends it and I understand the necessity in places where dissent is dangerous.
But what works and is necessary in dissent is destructive when embraced by local gossips.
One thing social media guarantees is that at one time or another politically correct attitudes will fall prey to actual attitudes and reality can be pretty ugly.
Bloggers have long argued that they deserve the same protections as journalists, but in most cases I disagree. While there are a few exceptions, most bloggers have neither the interest, ability nor resources to do in-depth research of a subject; what we produce is commentary and opinion pieces, so I am glad when a truly destructive blogger is sued and loses.
Of course, a primary reason for my dislike of social media is that it brings out so much human unthinking, me-focused stupidity. Seriously. If you thought distracted driving—email, texting, talking etc.—was bad try distracted doctoring!
And while Facebook and Google initiate efforts to become forces of good, not all twenty-somethings-and-up feel the need. (I have company:)
Crowdsourcing is a new wrinkle in the social world and one that I find positively uplifting. Join me next Saturday for a look at it.
Flickr image credit: pedroelcarvalho